Maine moose are not always easy to see when you visit Maine. The state of Maine is synonymous with wildlife, particularly the moose. With the moose population in Maine over 60,000 of these magnificent creatures in the state, it’s no secret that people flock to Maine with the hope of spotting one of these gentle giants. Only one state has more moose, and that’s Alaska.
But what are the chances of seeing a Maine moose, and where are the best places to look?
In this guide, we’ll take you through everything you need to know to increase your chances of glimpsing a moose in Maine.
Maine Moose Season
The first thing you need to know about spotting a moose in Maine is that there are certain times of the year that are better than others. Your best bet is between May and early October during the summer and early fall months.
During this time, moose are often found grazing in boggy areas or near water sources, such as streams or lakes. However, they can be roaming the roadside and come out of nowhere and hit your vehicle. It has happened to us twice in the past 3 years here.
I caught this moose on video the other day in our travels. It was hard to get a good shot with the angles of the sun but it was around 9 am.
The moose are most active in the fall during their mating season, or “rut.” The male moose have large, palmated antlers during the mating season that they shed and regrow each year.
The antlers help show their dominance and protect their eyes when competing for a mate. They will also splash their antlers with urine, a scent that entices cows to breed as well.
After the mating season, bulls shed their antlers in early winter to conserve energy during the cold weather. But in spring, the process starts again as antler bone begins to grow under a velvety skin covering.
Did you know that antlers are one of the fastest-growing tissues in the animal kingdom?
They can grow up to 8 inches in just nine days! By September, testosterone surges in bulls, and the velvet begins to shed, leaving the bare antlers behind.
Antlers on cows are rare, and young moose may have small buds by September, with larger development in older bulls. Maximum antler development is reached at age five and begins to decline in their teens.
A bull’s antler spread is typically no more than 65 inches, with a spread of 55 inches considered large. This cycle is an amazing example of the adaptability and survival instincts of the animal kingdom.
Maine Moose Watching
Next, you need to know where the best place to see a moose in Maine is. The best areas to spot moose are often seen in Baxter State Park, Moosehead Lake, and the Kennebec River Valley.
These areas offer ideal habitats for moose, with plenty of food, shade, and water. Remember, moose are most active at dawn and dusk, so plan your trip accordingly. Be aware that moose watching in Maine doesn’t always result in actually seeing one.
We had our aunt here a few years ago and every evening we went to a spot where they were known to be seen. We never saw one for the month she was here.
Another factor to consider is the weather. Moose tend to come out of the forest on cool, damp days, and they are more likely to be active during overcast days than in bright sunlight. They can often be seen in the winter months on snowmobile trails.
We have often seen them there on the snowmobile trail every season. Most have been in the distance but some make you stop as they are blocking the trail. Never engage with them, especially if they are with their young.
So, if you are planning a trip to Maine, keep an eye on the weather forecast and plan your moose-spotting activities accordingly. This photograph caught a beautiful video that was posted over on Instagram:
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Dawn and Dusk
Firstly, it’s important to note that moose sightings are not guaranteed, but the chances of seeing one can increase by visiting the right areas and knowing when to go. Maine moose like most moose worldwide are most active at dawn and dusk, so it’s best to plan your sightings around those times of day.
The two times we were hit by moose were in the early evening and one night around 9 pm.
Maine moose are also more prevalent in the northern and western parts of Maine, especially in areas with dense forests, wetlands, and streams.
Some great places to start your search for moose include the Moosehead Lake region, Rangeley Lakes region, Baxter State Park, and Aroostook County.
Moose Tours In Maine
When it comes to increasing your chances of seeing moose in Maine, nothing beats going with a trained guide. There are many experienced outdoor guides in Maine who specialize in moose watching.
They know the best places and times to spot moose and can answer any questions you may have about moose behavior and habitat.
Book a tour with a guide to get a personalized experience and increase your chances of seeing a moose. You could even book a Maine Moose safari.
In conclusion, if you’re looking for a thrilling wildlife experience, a trip to Maine to spot a moose is a must. With the right preparation and knowledge, you can increase your chances of seeing these magnificent animals in their natural habitat.
So, pack your bags, plan your trip, and get ready for an unforgettable adventure in Maine. Have you seen a moose before in your rural area or traveling to one?